Gene Summary

Gene:FANCF; Fanconi anemia, complementation group F
Aliases: FAF
Summary:The Fanconi anemia complementation group (FANC) currently includes FANCA, FANCB, FANCC, FANCD1 (also called BRCA2), FANCD2, FANCE, FANCF, FANCG, FANCI, FANCJ (also called BRIP1), FANCL, FANCM and FANCN (also called PALB2). The previously defined group FANCH is the same as FANCA. Fanconi anemia is a genetically heterogeneous recessive disorder characterized by cytogenetic instability, hypersensitivity to DNA crosslinking agents, increased chromosomal breakage, and defective DNA repair. The members of the Fanconi anemia complementation group do not share sequence similarity; they are related by their assembly into a common nuclear protein complex. This gene encodes the protein for complementation group F. [provided by RefSeq, Jul 2008]
Databases:OMIM, HGNC, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:Fanconi anemia group F protein
Source:NCBIAccessed: 18 March, 2015


What does this gene/protein do?
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Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
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Cancer Overview

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Publications Per Year (1990-2015)
Graph generated 18 March 2015 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

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Tag cloud generated 18 March, 2015 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (1)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

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Fanconi Anemia - Complementation Group F

Latest Publications

Zhao L, Li Y, He M, et al.
The Fanconi anemia pathway sensitizes to DNA alkylating agents by inducing JNK-p53-dependent mitochondrial apoptosis in breast cancer cells.
Int J Oncol. 2014; 45(1):129-38 [PubMed] Related Publications
The Fanconi anemia/BRCA (FA/BRCA) DNA damage repair pathway plays a pivotal role in the cellular response to DNA alkylating agents and greatly influences drug response in cancer treatment. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the FA/BRCA pathway reversed resistance have received limited attention. In the present study, we investigated the effect of Fanconi anemia complementation group F protein (FANCF), a critical factor of the FA/BRCA pathway, on cancer cell apoptosis induced by DNA alkylating agents such as mitomycin c (MMC). We found that FANCF shRNA potentiated MMC-induced cytotoxicity and apoptosis in MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells. At a mechanistic level, FANCF shRNA downregulated the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 and upregulated the pro-apoptotic protein Bax, accompanied by release of cyt-c and smac into the cytosol in MMC-treated cells. Furthermore, activation of caspase-3 and -9, other than caspase-8, cleavage of poly(ADP ribose) polymerase (PARP), and a decrease of mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) indicated that involvement of the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway in FANCF silencing of MMC-treated breast cancer cells. A decrease in IAP family proteins XIAP and survivin were also observed following FANCF silencing in MMC-treated breast cancer cells. Notably, FANCF shRNA was able to increase p53 levels through activation of the JNK pathway in MMC-treated breast cancer cells. Furthermore, p53 inhibition using pifithrin-α abolished the induction of caspase-3 and PARP by FANCF shRNA and MMC, indicating that MMC-induced apoptosis is substantially enhanced by FANCF shRNA via p53-dependent mechanisms. To our knowledge, we provide new evidence for the potential application of FANCF as a chemosensitizer in breast cancer therapy.

Chandrasekharappa SC, Lach FP, Kimble DC, et al.
Massively parallel sequencing, aCGH, and RNA-Seq technologies provide a comprehensive molecular diagnosis of Fanconi anemia.
Blood. 2013; 121(22):e138-48 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Current methods for detecting mutations in Fanconi anemia (FA)-suspected patients are inefficient and often miss mutations. We have applied recent advances in DNA sequencing and genomic capture to the diagnosis of FA. Specifically, we used custom molecular inversion probes or TruSeq-enrichment oligos to capture and sequence FA and related genes, including introns, from 27 samples from the International Fanconi Anemia Registry at The Rockefeller University. DNA sequencing was complemented with custom array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) and RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) analysis. aCGH identified deletions/duplications in 4 different FA genes. RNA-seq analysis revealed lack of allele specific expression associated with a deletion and splicing defects caused by missense, synonymous, and deep-in-intron variants. The combination of TruSeq-targeted capture, aCGH, and RNA-seq enabled us to identify the complementation group and biallelic germline mutations in all 27 families: FANCA (7), FANCB (3), FANCC (3), FANCD1 (1), FANCD2 (3), FANCF (2), FANCG (2), FANCI (1), FANCJ (2), and FANCL (3). FANCC mutations are often the cause of FA in patients of Ashkenazi Jewish (AJ) ancestry, and we identified 2 novel FANCC mutations in 2 patients of AJ ancestry. We describe here a strategy for efficient molecular diagnosis of FA.

He M, Sun HG, Hao JY, et al.
RNA interference-mediated FANCF silencing sensitizes OVCAR3 ovarian cancer cells to adriamycin through increased adriamycin-induced apoptosis dependent on JNK activation.
Oncol Rep. 2013; 29(5):1721-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
In the present study, we downregulated FANCF expression by small interfering RNA (siRNA) in OVCAR ovarian cancer cells to address the effects of decreased FANCF expression on the function of the Fanconi anemia (FA)/breast cancer susceptibility gene (BRCA) pathway. Furthermore, we investigated whether this method increases the sensitivity of OVCAR3 cells to adriamycin (ADM) and the possible mechanism(s). We found that silencing of FANCF inactivated the FA/BRCA pathway by decreasing the monoubiquitination and focus formation of FANCD2 and reduced the function of the FA/BRCA pathway, resulting in the inhibition of cell proliferation, increased cell apoptosis and DNA damage in OVCAR3 cells. Moreover, we observed that silencing of FANCF enhanced the antiproliferative effect of ADM in OVCAR3 cells and increased ADM intracellular accumulation consequently sensitizing OVCAR3 cells to ADM. Furthermore, silencing of FANCF increased cell apoptosis of OVCAR3 cells which was caused by decreased mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP)-induced DNA damage, activated Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), increased release of cytochrome c, increased expression of cleaved caspase-3 and poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) dependent on JNK activation following treatment of ADM. Collectively, we confirm that silencing of FANCF sensitizes OVCAR3 ovarian cancer cells to ADM, suggesting that FANCF may serve as a potential target for therapeutic strategies in the treatment of ovarian cancer.

Kusayanagi T, Tsukuda S, Shimura S, et al.
The antitumor agent doxorubicin binds to Fanconi anemia group F protein.
Bioorg Med Chem. 2012; 20(21):6248-55 [PubMed] Related Publications
Doxorubicin, a commonly used cancer chemotherapy agent, elicits several potent biological effects, including synergistic-antitumor activity in combination with cisplatin. However, the mechanism of this synergism remains obscure. Here, we employed an improved T7 phage display screening method to identify Fanconi anemia group F protein (FANCF) as a doxorubicin-binding protein. The FANCF-doxorubicin interaction was confirmed by pull-down assay and SPR analysis. FANCF is a component of the Fanconi anemia complex, which monoubiquitinates D2 protein of Fanconi anemia group as a cellular response against DNA cross-linkers such as cisplatin. We observed that the monoubiquitination was inhibited by doxorubicin treatment.

Li Y, Zhao L, Sun H, et al.
Gene silencing of FANCF potentiates the sensitivity to mitoxantrone through activation of JNK and p38 signal pathways in breast cancer cells.
PLoS One. 2012; 7(8):e44254 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Fanconi anemia complementation group-F (FANCF) is a key factor to maintain the function of FA/BRCA, a DNA-damage response pathway. However, the functional role of FANCF in breast cancer has not been elucidated. In this study, we examined the effects and mechanisms of FANCF-RNAi on the sensitivity of breast cancer cells to mitoxantrone (MX). FANCF silencing by FANCF-shRNA blocked functions of FA/BRCA pathway through inhibition of FANCD2 mono-ubiquitination in breast cancer cell lines MCF-7 and T-47D. In addition, FANCF shRNA inhibited cell proliferation, induced apoptosis, and chromosome fragmentation in both breast cancer cells. We also found that FANCF silencing potentiated the sensitivity to MX in breast cancer cells, accompanying with an increase in intracellular MX accumulation and a decrease in BCRP expression. Furthermore, we found that the blockade of FA/BRCA pathway by FANCF-RNAi activated p38 and JNK MAPK signal pathways in response to MX treatment. BCRP expression was restored by p38 inhibitor SB203580, but not by JNK inhibitor SP600125. FANCF silencing increased JNK and p38 mediated activation of p53 in MX-treated breast cancer cells, activated the mitochondrial apoptosis pathway. Our findings indicate that FANCF shRNA potentiates the sensitivity of breast cancer cells to MX, suggesting that FANCF may be a potential target for therapeutic strategies for the treatment of breast tumors.

Parashar G, Parashar NC, Capalash N
Curcumin causes promoter hypomethylation and increased expression of FANCF gene in SiHa cell line.
Mol Cell Biochem. 2012; 365(1-2):29-35 [PubMed] Related Publications
Curcumin and resveratrol were evaluated for their potential to cause reversal of promoter hypermethylation and associated gene expression of FANCF in SiHa cell line. Methylation specific PCR along with bisulphite sequencing revealed the demethylation of 12 CpG sites out of 15 CpG sites spanning ?280 to ?432 region of FANCF promoter after treatment with curcumin and fivefold up regulation of FANCF gene expression as shown by qRT-PCR. In vitro methylation assay also showed that M.SssI an analogue of DNMT1 was effectively inhibited at 50 lM concentration of curcumin. Resveratrol was not found to be effective in causing reversal of promoter hypermethylation of FANCF gene when used at 20 lM for 4 days in SiHa cell line.

Bakker ST, van de Vrugt HJ, Visser JA, et al.
Fancf-deficient mice are prone to develop ovarian tumours.
J Pathol. 2012; 226(1):28-39 [PubMed] Related Publications
Fanconi anaemia (FA) is a rare recessive disorder marked by developmental abnormalities, bone marrow failure, and a high risk for the development of leukaemia and solid tumours. The inactivation of FA genes, in particular FANCF, has also been documented in sporadic tumours in non-FA patients. To study whether there is a causal relationship between FA pathway defects and tumour development, we have generated a mouse model with a targeted disruption of the FA core complex gene Fancf. Fancf-deficient mouse embryonic fibroblasts displayed a phenotype typical for FA cells: they showed an aberrant response to DNA cross-linking agents as manifested by G(2) arrest, chromosomal aberrations, reduced survival, and an inability to monoubiquitinate FANCD2. Fancf homozygous mice were viable, born following a normal Mendelian distribution, and showed no growth retardation or developmental abnormalities. The gonads of Fancf mutant mice functioned abnormally, showing compromised follicle development and spermatogenesis as has been observed in other FA mouse models and in FA patients. In a cohort of Fancf-deficient mice, we observed decreased overall survival and increased tumour incidence. Notably, in seven female mice, six ovarian tumours developed: five granulosa cell tumours and one luteoma. One mouse had developed tumours in both ovaries. High-resolution array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) on these tumours suggests that the increased incidence of ovarian tumours correlates with the infertility in Fancf-deficient mice and the genomic instability characteristic of FA pathway deficiency.

Meier D, Schindler D
Fanconi anemia core complex gene promoters harbor conserved transcription regulatory elements.
PLoS One. 2011; 6(8):e22911 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The Fanconi anemia (FA) gene family is a recent addition to the complex network of proteins that respond to and repair certain types of DNA damage in the human genome. Since little is known about the regulation of this novel group of genes at the DNA level, we characterized the promoters of the eight genes (FANCA, B, C, E, F, G, L and M) that compose the FA core complex. The promoters of these genes show the characteristic attributes of housekeeping genes, such as a high GC content and CpG islands, a lack of TATA boxes and a low conservation. The promoters functioned in a monodirectional way and were, in their most active regions, comparable in strength to the SV40 promoter in our reporter plasmids. They were also marked by a distinctive transcriptional start site (TSS). In the 5' region of each promoter, we identified a region that was able to negatively regulate the promoter activity in HeLa and HEK 293 cells in isolation. The central and 3' regions of the promoter sequences harbor binding sites for several common and rare transcription factors, including STAT, SMAD, E2F, AP1 and YY1, which indicates that there may be cross-connections to several established regulatory pathways. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays and siRNA experiments confirmed the shared regulatory responses between the prominent members of the TGF-β and JAK/STAT pathways and members of the FA core complex. Although the promoters are not well conserved, they share region and sequence specific regulatory motifs and transcription factor binding sites (TBFs), and we identified a bi-partite nature to these promoters. These results support a hypothesis based on the co-evolution of the FA core complex genes that was expanded to include their promoters.

Tumini E, Plevani P, Muzi-Falconi M, Marini F
Physical and functional crosstalk between Fanconi anemia core components and the GINS replication complex.
DNA Repair (Amst). 2011; 10(2):149-58 [PubMed] Related Publications
Fanconi anemia (FA) is an inherited disease characterized by bone marrow failure, increased cancer risk and hypersensitivity to DNA cross-linking agents, implying a role for this pathway in the maintenance of genomic stability. The central player of the FA pathway is the multi-subunit E3 ubiquitin ligase complex activated through a replication- and DNA damage-dependent mechanism. A consequence of the activation of the complex is the monoubiquitylation of FANCD2 and FANCI, late term effectors in the maintenance of genome integrity. The details regarding the coordination of the FA-dependent response and the DNA replication process are still mostly unknown. We found, by yeast two-hybrid assay and co-immunoprecipitation in human cells, that the core complex subunit FANCF physically interacts with PSF2, a member of the GINS complex essential for both the initiation and elongation steps of DNA replication. In HeLa cells depleted for PSF2, we observed a decreased binding to chromatin of the FA core complex, suggesting that the GINS complex may have a role in either loading or stabilizing the FA core complex onto chromatin. Consistently, GINS and core complex bind chromatin contemporarily upon origin firing and PSF2 depletion sensitizes cells to DNA cross-linking agents. However, depletion of PSF2 is not sufficient to reduce monoubiquitylation of FANCD2 or its localization to nuclear foci following DNA damage. Our results suggest a novel crosstalk between DNA replication and the FA pathway.

Toyota M, Suzuki H
Epigenetic drivers of genetic alterations.
Adv Genet. 2010; 70:309-23 [PubMed] Related Publications
DNA methylation plays a key role in the silencing of cancer-related genes, thereby affecting numerous cellular processes, including the cell cycle checkpoint, apoptosis, signal transduction, cell adhesion, and angiogenesis. DNA methylation also affects the expression of genes involved in maintaining the integrity of the genome through DNA repair and detoxification of reactive oxygen species. Here, we discuss how epigenetic changes lead to genetic alterations, including microsatellite instability and nucleotide and chromosomal alterations. Epigenetic inactivation of hMLH1 is a major cause of microsatellite instability in sporadic colorectal cancers, and germline epimutation of hMLH1 and hMSH2 is a cause of hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancers, which do not show mutation of mismatch repair genes. Epigenetic inactivation of MGMT is often associated with G:C-to-A:T mutations in K-ras and p53, while epigenetic inactivation of BRCA1, WRN, FANCF, and CHFR impairs the machinery involved in maintaining genomic integrity. Epigenetic alteration of the genes involved in the induction of senescence is often associated with cancers showing mutations in the Ras signaling pathway. In addition to regional hypermethylation, global hypomethylation is also a common feature of tumors. Hypomethylation of short and long interspersed repetitive elements has been reported, and hypomethylation affecting the integrity of the genome has been observed in ICF syndrome and various cancers. Dissection of the epigenetic drivers of genetic instability may be important for the development of novel approaches to the treatment of cancer.

Deans AJ, West SC
FANCM connects the genome instability disorders Bloom's Syndrome and Fanconi Anemia.
Mol Cell. 2009; 36(6):943-53 [PubMed] Related Publications
Fanconi Anemia (FA) and Bloom's Syndrome (BS) are genetic disorders characterized by overlapping phenotypes, including aberrant DNA repair and cancer predisposition. Here, we show that the FANCM gene product, FANCM protein, links FA and BS by acting as a protein anchor and bridge that targets key components of the FA and BS pathways to stalled replication forks, thus linking multiple components that are necessary for efficient DNA repair. Two highly conserved protein:protein interaction motifs in FANCM, designated MM1 and MM2, were identified. MM1 interacts with the FA core complex by binding to FANCF, whereas MM2 interacts with RM1 and topoisomerase IIIalpha, components of the BS complex. The MM1 and MM2 motifs were independently required to activate the FA and BS pathways. Moreover, a common phenotype of BS and FA cells-an elevated frequency of sister chromatid exchanges-was due to a loss of interaction of the two complexes through FANCM.

Tokunaga E, Okada S, Kitao H, et al.
Low incidence of methylation of the promoter region of the FANCF gene in Japanese primary breast cancer.
Breast Cancer. 2011; 18(2):120-3 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: The link between BRCA1 dysfunction and basal-like breast cancer or triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) has been suggested; however, the associations of other factors involved in the Fanconi anemia (FA)/BRCA pathway with the pathogenesis of basal-like breast cancer remain unidentified. FANCF protein is a component of the FA core complex. The methylation of CpG islands in the FANCF gene plays an important role in occurrence of ovarian cancer and also is an important regulator of cisplatin sensitivity of ovarian cancer. The purpose of this study is to investigate the frequency of FANCF methylation, and to discuss its involvement in the pathogenesis of TNBC and its potency as a predictor of cisplatin sensitivity for breast cancer.
METHODS: The methylation of the FANCF gene promoter was investigated, using methylation-specific PCR, in genomic DNA of 99 invasive breast carcinoma specimens obtained from Japanese patients.
RESULTS: FANCF methylation was recognized in only 4 of 99 cases (4.0%). No significant correlation was found between FANCF methylation and the expression of ER, PR, HER2, and TNBC.
CONCLUSIONS: FANCF methylation is a rare event in Japanese primary invasive breast cancer. This suggests it is not involved in the pathogenesis of TNBC, and it could not be used as a predictor of cisplatin sensitivity in breast cancer.

Saberwal G, Horvath E, Hu L, et al.
The interferon consensus sequence binding protein (ICSBP/IRF8) activates transcription of the FANCF gene during myeloid differentiation.
J Biol Chem. 2009; 284(48):33242-54 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The interferon consensus sequence binding protein (ICSBP) is an interferon regulatory transcription factor with leukemia-suppressor activity. ICSBP regulates genes that are involved in phagocyte function, proliferation, and apoptosis. In murine models ICSBP deficiency results in a myeloproliferative disorder (MPD) with increased mature neutrophils. Over time this MPD progresses to acute myeloid leukemia (AML), suggesting that ICSBP deficiency is adequate for MPD, but additional genetic lesions are required for AML. The hypothesis of these studies is that dysregulation of key target genes predisposes to disease progression under conditions of decreased ICSBP expression. To investigate this hypothesis, we used chromatin co-immunoprecipitation to identify genes involved the ICSBP-leukemia suppressor effect. In the current studies, we identify the gene encoding Fanconi F (FANCF) as an ICSBP target gene. FancF participates in a repair of cross-linked DNA. We identify a FANCF promoter cis element, which is activated by ICSBP in differentiating myeloid cells. We also determine that DNA cross-link repair is impaired in ICSBP-deficient myeloid cells in a FancF-dependent manner. This effect is observed in differentiating cells, suggesting that ICSBP protects against the genotoxic stress of myelopoiesis. Decreased ICSBP expression is found in human AML and chronic myeloid leukemia during blast crisis (CML-BC). Our studies suggest that ICSBP deficiency may be functionally important for accumulation of chromosomal abnormalities during disease progression in these myeloid malignancies.

Swisher EM, Gonzalez RM, Taniguchi T, et al.
Methylation and protein expression of DNA repair genes: association with chemotherapy exposure and survival in sporadic ovarian and peritoneal carcinomas.
Mol Cancer. 2009; 8:48 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: DNA repair genes critically regulate the cellular response to chemotherapy and epigenetic regulation of these genes may be influenced by chemotherapy exposure. Restoration of BRCA1 and BRCA2 mediates resistance to platinum chemotherapy in recurrent BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutated hereditary ovarian carcinomas. We evaluated BRCA1, BRCA2, and MLH1 protein expression in 115 sporadic primary ovarian carcinomas, of which 31 had paired recurrent neoplasms collected after chemotherapy. Additionally, we assessed whether promoter methylation of BRCA1, MLH1 or FANCF influenced response to chemotherapy or explained alterations in protein expression after chemotherapy exposure.
RESULTS: Of 115 primary sporadic ovarian carcinomas, 39 (34%) had low BRCA1 protein and 49 (42%) had low BRCA2 expression. BRCA1 and BRCA2 protein expression were highly concordant (p < 0.0001). MLH1 protein loss occurred in 28/115 (24%) primary neoplasms. BRCA1 protein loss in primary neoplasms was associated with better survival (p = 0.02 Log Rank test) and remained significant after accounting for either stage or age in a multivariate model (p = 0.04, Cox proportional hazards). In paired specimens, BRCA1 protein expression increased in 13/21 (62%) and BRCA2 protein expression increased in 15/21 (71%) of recurrent carcinomas with low or intermediate protein in the paired primary. In contrast MLH1 expression was rarely decreased in recurrent carcinomas (1/33, 3%). Similar frequencies of MLH1, BRCA1, and FANCF promoter methylation occurred in primary carcinomas without previous chemotherapy, after neoadjuvant chemotherapy, or in recurrent neoplasms.
CONCLUSION: Low BRCA1 expression in primary sporadic ovarian carcinoma is associated with prolonged survival. Recurrent ovarian carcinomas commonly have increased BRCA1 and/or BRCA2 protein expression post chemotherapy exposure which could mediate resistance to platinum based therapies. However, alterations in expression of these proteins after chemotherapy are not commonly mediated by promoter methylation, and other regulatory mechanisms are likely to contribute to these alterations.

Ali AM, Kirby M, Jansen M, et al.
Identification and characterization of mutations in FANCL gene: a second case of Fanconi anemia belonging to FA-L complementation group.
Hum Mutat. 2009; 30(7):E761-70 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Fanconi anemia (FA) is a rare autosomal recessive or X-linked disorder characterized by aplastic anemia, cancer susceptibility and cellular sensitivity to DNA crosslinking agents. Eight FA proteins (FANCA, FANCB, FANCC, FANCE, FANCF, FANCG, FANCL and FANCM) and three non-FA proteins (FAAP100, FAAP24 and HES1) form an FA nuclear core complex, which is required for monoubiquitination of the FANCD2-FANCI dimer upon DNA damage. FANCL possesses a PHD/RING-finger domain and is a putative E3 ubiquitin ligase subunit of the core complex. In this study, we report an FA patient with an unusual presentation belonging to the FA-L complementation group. The patient lacks an obvious FA phenotype except for the presence of a café-au-lait spot, mild hypocellularity and a family history of leukemia. The molecular diagnosis and identification of the FA subgroup was achieved by FA complementation assay. We identified bi-allelic novel mutations in the FANCL gene and functionally characterized them. To the best of our knowledge, this is the second reported case belonging to the FA-L complementation group.

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Cite this page: Cotterill SJ. FANCF, Cancer Genetics Web: Accessed:

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